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Buying a little land for a home base...reasonable?
Old 09-25-2013, 12:08 PM   #1
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Buying a little land for a home base...reasonable?

I am curious if buying a little patch of land in the Northwest where we currently live might be a reasonable idea. Possibly eastern WA state.

We have been building our own RV and plan to hit the road in 2015 to do some adventures (when we are at age 46 with about 1.3 million invested). I think we will do some part time work over the next 10 years but probably nothing longer than a 6 month to 1 year engineering contract. We will be selling our house and so will have no permanent address.

I have been toying with the idea of a patch of land in eastern WA as we go there quite a bit now to ride motorcycles and snowmobiles. It is really fairly cheap land...maybe $30,000 for 10 acres. Easy enough to just pay cash...heck I made that much recently in Nokia.

Would this be of any benefit to helping keep our residency in no-income-tax WA state and also for ACA exchange coverage? It could be that we don't return to the land for a year or more. I would probably want some sort of secure storage shed for things that we don't want to take around the country but don't want to sell. Then I start thinking maybe the cost isn't worth it...
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:40 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Fermion View Post
I am curious if buying a little patch of land in the Northwest where we currently live might be a reasonable idea. Possibly eastern WA state.

We have been building our own RV and plan to hit the road in 2015 to do some adventures (when we are at age 46 with about 1.3 million invested). I think we will do some part time work over the next 10 years but probably nothing longer than a 6 month to 1 year engineering contract. We will be selling our house and so will have no permanent address.

I have been toying with the idea of a patch of land in eastern WA as we go there quite a bit now to ride motorcycles and snowmobiles. It is really fairly cheap land...maybe $30,000 for 10 acres. Easy enough to just pay cash...heck I made that much recently in Nokia.

Would this be of any benefit to helping keep our residency in no-income-tax WA state and also for ACA exchange coverage? It could be that we don't return to the land for a year or more. I would probably want some sort of secure storage shed for things that we don't want to take around the country but don't want to sell. Then I start thinking maybe the cost isn't worth it...

Would a storage shed on ten acres in the middle of nowhere be a safe place to store your stuff? I would be hesitant to put my belongings in such a place. How about putting a very small cabin on the land, in addition to the storage shed? Then you would meet the residency requirement for sure.
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:42 PM   #3
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Just be careful where you buy.

Washington State has a potentially huge issue with leaking radioactive material (from waste containers)...larger than some federal authorities have yet to acknowledge.

Some experts claim that it is, or has the propensity, to leak into the water table.
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:43 PM   #4
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I think to establish residency, you have to prove that you're in that state at least 6 months of the year. Might be hard to do without a house on the land. You might want to look into the local laws and such.

Also, if you buy a piece of land, it might not even have an address, until a house is built on it. I have 10 acres down in Southern Virginia, but it doesn't have an address, just a tax ID number. So, you might want to look into that, as well.
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:59 PM   #5
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Yo from Bellingham (and Baku, and, and, and...).

If at all possible, keep your residence in WA.

The only problem I can see for you is a post office box somewhere there. I believe there are mailing services in Seattle. You need these.
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Old 09-25-2013, 01:46 PM   #6
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I would go with a very small house or cabin. As long as you pay your light bill, they will have no way to know if you are at home or not. We pay all of our bills with a credit card, not because we are on the road, but because we get cash back. You can pay your credit card bill online each month no matter where you are.

As far as storing valuables, you can go underground. A steel reinforced concrete room with a steel door would do the trick. Anything else would be simple to break into. A chainsaw will open up a house in a couple of minutes.

How crowded is the land around where you are thinking of buying? {ten acres is not a big piece of land. I live on forty and wish it was bigger} Sometimes it is neighbors you have to look out for the most. They would know you were gone, and could look around your place anytime they wanted.
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Old 09-25-2013, 01:58 PM   #7
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So, like build a cabin? In the past we have built a 60 foot x 12 foot deck, a 12 x 12 storage shed and are currently building a steel frame/aluminum skinned camper for a flatbed truck in our current house garage. I guess I am saying we have the skills to build a small cabin if needed, although our truck camper is going to be quite comfortable.

Here is a pic of it getting ready for paint (still have a lot of interior work to do):

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Old 09-25-2013, 05:46 PM   #8
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Having the skills to build a cabin is a wonderful thing, but sometimes you can buy one cheaper in the right location that has all the utilities completed and paid in the purchase price. I lean toward the hammer and saw as well, but force myself to pick up a calculator in the end.

Lots of cool stuff around Cle Elum, but it depends on where you want to ride most. There is a proposed development around this very activity:
http://trailsidehomes.com/wp-content...f-Commerce.pdf
Looks like you could ride out of your garage, but $ more than 30k

A place in Issaquah might fit the bill, and be much more valuble over time. Just need enough room for a toy hauler.
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Old 09-25-2013, 06:11 PM   #9
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I hear you loud and clear bld999. I love to build but there are issues such as septic, permits, wells, foundation, roads, all of which can turn a $20,000 parcel into $200,000 in a hurry.

As an example, our house nearer to Seattle is valued at around $300,000 for over 4000 sq ft on 3/4 acre riverfront according to zillow. The estimated cost to build it even if you could get a permit for building on one of the best Salmon rivers in the area is near $550,000.

It isn't worth it for us to spend more than $100,000 or so if we may end up spending a year in Florida or two years in Alaska or whatever. I could handle $30,000 plus a $20,000 steel outbuilding...something like that, but it sounds as if this would do very little to provide us proof of residency and safe storage.

We do ride near Cle-Elum. Past Roslyn (remember Northern Exposure?) there are some great trails that link up with the Blewett Pass area and on into the burned out Table Mountain. I actually have a nice photo of that area from this past winter (2nd pic is me on my snopro M8 with Rainier way off in the background (I am near lion rock):



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Old 09-25-2013, 06:12 PM   #10
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Before I definitely decided to settle in Seattle (before my kids were grown and settled here and I also saw that I could afford to stay) I considered something like this plan. What I decided I would explore was a city lot in a town like Othello next door to the police station with a garage or concrete storage shed on it. Or perhaps someplace up near the Potholes Reservoir, again in sight of the police station.

Never followed up as I decided to stay in Seattle. Looking back, it would have been a poor choice for me, I really didn't want an RV, or to live in the country or to travel around the countryside.

Ha
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Old 09-25-2013, 06:58 PM   #11
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Good stuff, i am moto only, not a sledder, but I ride many areas in Washington.
Recently:

Boiling Lake out of Twisp:

.

Down off Horsehead Pass, same ride, I'm the first old coot on the 200 2t.
Rocks and more rocks.



Good stuff all over the state, as well as Idaho, Montana, Oregon...
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Old 09-25-2013, 07:17 PM   #12
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Nice bike! We ride moto in the summer but got bored in the winter and don't like riding our dual sports on snow, so had to go with sleds

This is rapidly turning into a "make people jealous who don't live in WA state" thread.
Here are our Yamaha WR250R bikes and the 2nd pic is my wife at Long Beach WA riding on the beach (legal)



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Old 09-25-2013, 08:24 PM   #13
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One concern is to be sure that you could put a septic system in eventually, as well as a well. Be sure you have enough land for that. Does a nearby town have a UPS store, you can use that as the address, and their web site says they would forward for a fee. At least in Tx you can put a different mailing address on a drivers license than a residence address, so if you know which rural route the land would be on you could use that as the residence address.
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Old 09-26-2013, 05:34 AM   #14
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Don't want to hijack the thread, but is $1.3million enough with all those toys ?

I don't see any "strategic reasons" (domicile, etc) for owning land. I understand wanting a "shop home base" given all your "tools and toys".

I knew a guy who lived in RV but found property owners with vacant buildings/barns and rented space for tools and toys and shop access. He'd set up his tools/shop in different places for 6-12 months at a time, exploring region in RV. Very interesting life.
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Old 09-26-2013, 07:30 AM   #15
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If you buy in a remote area, be sure and have a percolation test done for the future septic tank. Also, I'd get an estimate on digging a well.
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Old 09-26-2013, 07:40 AM   #16
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Here are our Yamaha WR250R bikes and the 2nd pic is my wife at Long Beach WA riding on the beach (legal)
How do you like those Wolfman Rotopax mounts? I though long and hard about getting them for my XR650L, but went with an oversize (5.8 gal) Acerbis tank instead. I worried the Wolfman racks made the bike to wide.
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Old 09-26-2013, 11:36 AM   #17
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How do you like those Wolfman Rotopax mounts? I though long and hard about getting them for my XR650L, but went with an oversize (5.8 gal) Acerbis tank instead. I worried the Wolfman racks made the bike to wide.
The mounts are awesome. The extra fuel gives us about a 200 mile range on the bikes and the yellow dry bags hold enough gear for a weekend bike camping trip (we also put a aluminum billet rack above the rear fender.

We use the same Rotopax mount on our snowmobiles. I would say on the bike that the fuel pack does not make the bike too wide, but the yellow dry bags have been known to brush up against a tree on very tight forest single track. Once I set up camp though it is easy enough to remove the bags.
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Old 09-26-2013, 11:43 AM   #18
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Don't want to hijack the thread, but is $1.3million enough with all those toys ?
Probably not enough, but try digging out a 500 pound sled stuck in a snow drift when you are 70.

I do all of the maintenance work on the bike and the sleds (rebuilt the motor on my wife's sled) but the parts are expensive.

As far as having a shop, we are designing the back half of the flatbed truck to contain a small garage. When the bikes are removed from the garage it will allow a little work area with a CNC milling machine on the back wall bench. I will also take my TIG and MIG welders with us.

Here is my crude model of the camper, garage pod, and the 20 foot flatbed Isuzu truck:

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Old 09-28-2013, 05:02 AM   #19
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Wow that is interesting! So you are making a camper out of an Isuzu box truck? That's a first for me. We saw a lot of the off road Iveco truck campers in Europe and I was really jealous of both the mod cons and the price tags. And
the fact one of them hauled our 23 foot school bus out of deep sand at Lake Baikal effortlessly.

I'm guessing the box truck isn't going to be for off-road though--that's what the toys are for. I love to see your progress on the conversion.
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Old 09-28-2013, 07:20 AM   #20
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Boiling Lake out of Twisp:
Twisp. Haven't heard that name for many, many years. We used travel near there on the way to my Grandparents' house.
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